In 1984 at the age of almost 23, I found myself having my third child and all alone. My husband had left me because I refused to have an abortion. In as much as I didn't believe in abortion, I also believed marriage was a lifelong commitment and therefore I couldn't risk having another child if I was going to try to save my marriage. After the birth of my third child (all three are sons), I had my tubes tied. A year later my husband and I reconciled and spent the rest of 15 years of married life with many more downs than ups. In 1994 I finally decided Heavenly Father did not intend for me to be miserable for the rest of my life and the courts released me from the torture.
Shortly thereafter, my best friend and confidante decided to tell me how he really felt. Mike and I began dating and our friendship grew into a greater love. Not wanting to make the same mistake, we decided to move slowly to see how the relationship went. A while later we joined households and this 33 year old man (who hadn't had a roommate since college and had never lived with another woman) took on a very shattered me, 2 teenage boys and 1 pre-teen boy. We all came with our share of problems: the oldest had a drug problem, the 2nd boy had a bad attitude problem and the pre-teen didn't want to do anything. My husband is truly the bravest man I know and my hero.
When we got together in 1994, I asked him if he wanted children and explained about my tubes being cut and tied. I didn't want to start a future with someone when it might end quickly over this issue. My sons deserved stability and we deserved honesty between us. After having dealt with my oldest son's drug problem, and I asked my husband about more children, his answer was a resounding "NO!". In the course of dealing with my son's problems, I realized it might just be possible to have my tubes reconnected. However, after getting my oldest son clean we were now dealing with my second son's attitude problems and when I mentioned the possibility of having my tubes reconnected and trying for another baby, my husband thought I was insane. I said okay, but if you change your mind, I don't want to get pregnant after I am 40.
After graduating our full concentration to the third son, Mike found himself enjoying the scouting program and different activities he and my third son did together. Again I asked him if he wanted to try for children. Again he said no, but was no longer as emphatic about it.
My oldest son married in 1997. In 1998, Mike and I became grandparents at the ages of 38 and 36, respectively. Later on that same year we became grandparents for the second time courtesy of my second son. We loved the babies. They were truly the light of our lives. Even my dear sweet husband, who had never been around babies before, loved every moment. Watching them coo, crawl and then make those first steps. And the laughter the babies provided us was such a miracle.
Sometime after our grandson's second birthday, I again asked my husband about children. This time he said yes, let's try. I was 38 years old. I began the tedious process of researching methods, surgeries, doctors, prices and success rates. Thank goodness for the internet! I wasn't happy with the success rates of many of the doctors. Some of the prices were exorbitant. Then I found Dr. Levin. The success rate was so much higher than others. The price was reasonable and all inclusive. I didn't have to worry about paying 20 different people for the one procedure. The only draw back was he was in Kentucky and we lived in Texas. We had enough saved for one shot at this and only enough for me to make the trip. We decided to take the chance and at least do the initial consultation. We both loved Dr. Levin. We prayed on it and decided to go for it. Mike wasn't real thrilled at his "test" and I ran into a brick wall trying to get records from 1984. I spoke with Dr. Levin, he told me what to say, and the next day the papers were faxed. Although I was 38 years old and not slim, Dr. Levin seemed to think we would be successful. I flew to Kentucky and had a very enjoyable stay (well, ok, the recovery portion didn't feel great). What impressed my husband was that Dr. Levin took the time right after the surgery to call my husband in Texas and tell him how it went and how I was. I felt like Dr. Levin was part of our family. On my way out (and after having the staples removed), he gave me some words of encouragement, a big hug and wished us good luck. I was very impressed with this doctor, the hospital and the Jewish Inn.
After coming home, we tried and tried to get pregnant. I was rapidly approaching 40 (my self imposed cut-off time) and no baby. In February 2001, at the age of 39, I found a lump in my breast. Fearing cancer, I went for all the standard tests. They were not able to rule out cancer. In March, I had a biopsy. We waited 2 long weeks for the results. Making a baby was the furtherest thing from our mind. I had a benign tumor - no cancer! And I had forgotten about trying to have a baby. And I was pregnant! Four months before my 40th birthday.
Alyssa Serena Murray was born on January 8, 2002 by C-section. She was a whopping 7 lbs. 12 oz and 20 inches long and very, very beautiful. After having 3 sons and 3 grandsons, we were ever so thankful to have this little girl. Thank you Dr. Levin and God bless.
Mike, Linda & Alyssa Murray